Here's What We're Really Thinking When We Get a Wedding Invitation
'Tis the season for white dresses and multi-tiered cakes: Wedding season is upon us. While all the springtime sunshine has us feeling blissfully romantic, we also have some darker feelings about weddings, ones that come out if we're being truly honest (like on this epic RSVP card).
Sure, we want to support our friends and family as they step into the world of matrimony, but to be honest, weddings are eating up our vacation days and costing us way too much money, not to mention making us question our own romantic futures.
Here's the hurricane of emotions we feel when we receive an invite in the mail.
1. "Well, that's a weird-looking font."
You can't help it. From the privacy of your home, ripping open an envelope alone, an invite is the first and easiest thing to judge about a wedding.
2. "Lord, how much did they spend on these invites?"
The invitation might be the first taste guests get of a wedding, so it's no surprise people go all out. The Knot's 2014 report put the cost of invitations at $443 (and that's just one of the zillion things couples spend money on).
3. "I really only like one of these people."
Only friends with one-half of the happy couple? That might mean begrudgingly attending and putting on your best happy face, or coming up with a "creative excuse" for why you can't make it. Sometimes, it takes both halves of a couple to convince you to sacrifice your free time and cold, hard cash.
4. "OK, how much money am I going to have to spend on this thing?"
Weddings easily cost five figures, with the average American affair coming in at $31,213, according to the Knot. That's more than the average undergraduate student loan debt. But it's also expensive for guests, who spend nearly $700 dollars to simply attend, shelling out for everything from party-appropriate clothes to travel. Those destination weddings don't pay for themselves.
5. "Thank God I'm not a bridesmaid."
If attending weddings is expensive, being in the bridal party can be astronomical — up to $1,695, by one measure. As Carey Purcell wrote in AlterNet, "I consider the financial expectations that are placed on women in bridal parties to be excessive, unreasonable and sexist — and all too ingrained as a part of our culture as being 'the way it is.'" It doesn't have to be that way.
6. "This should only screw up my entire schedule in July."
A Sunday night in upstate New York? A Thursday evening at a remote venue 25 miles from the office? Weddings require cutting hours from your workday, rearranging commitments and missing out on other events, all so you can go to a party. It can make the whole experience difficult to enjoy. No one wants a bitter wedding guest, but perhaps the couples could try to make things a little convenient?
7. "Great, there go my last three vacation days."
Speaking of your schedule being screwed up: Who needs real vacations when you can just take a vacation to a destination wedding? According to the Knot's latest report, 24% of weddings in 2014 were destination weddings, taking place in popular spots like Hawaii, the Bahamas and Mexico. We all work hard for those precious hours of time off. Sometimes, the last thing we want to do on our vacation is watch someone else say "I do."
8. "At least there's free food."
We all sit through the vows to get to the reception, even though wedding food is notoriously bad. The bigger the wedding, the blander the food; more people with more dietary restrictions (or complaints) is bound to make for a mediocre mealtime. The safest strategy: ordering the veggie option.
9. "I wonder if there will be anyone hot there?"
Maybe it's all the fuzzy, warm feelings floating around the happy couple, but weddings bring out something in all of us — something that can only be described as borderline thirsty. (You saw Wedding Crashers, right?) So it's no surprise wedding hookups are still an expected, highly-anticipated wrap to every reception.
10. "Definitely buying off the registry for this one."
Seriously, if we're emptying our bank accounts to attend someone else's party, an extravagant gift cannot be expected. That's what registries are for, right? Hope you really wanted those kitchen tools.
11. "Lord, what am I going to wear?"
Related thought: "Ugh, I better look good for this." If you're going to be on the prowl for a prospective hookup or ending up in photos, you're going to want to look good doing it, right? But finding the perfect outfit isn't easy, especially since no one wants to shell out hundreds for a dress when they're just a guest.
12. "At least there will be an open bar."
Ah, the open bar. It's the first thing we think when we peel open that envelope because, if we're honest, spending a weekend basking in the love of some couple you are not a part of requires liquor. At least couples realize this, spending an average of $66 per guest on food and drinks, according to Time.
Free-flowing alcohol on your friend's dime always sweetens the deal.